16 days in California's Central Coast Itinerary

16 days in California's Central Coast Itinerary

Created using Inspirock California's Central Coast trip itinerary planner

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Route & dates

16 days in California's Central Coast Itinerary

Start: Memphis
Fly:  8​h 30​min
1
Santa Barbara
— 5 nights
Drive:  1​h 45​min
2
Pismo Beach
— 2 nights
Drive:  1​h 15​min
3
San Simeon
— 3 nights
Drive:  3​h
4
Monterey
— 5 nights
Fly:  9​h 15​min
End: Memphis

5
nights
Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara ©
Nestled between the Pacific Ocean and the Santa Ynez Mountains, Santa Barbara is a solid vacation destination with its wide beaches, renowned wineries, and some of California's finest shopping and dining options.
Bring the kids along to Old Mission Santa Barbara and Carpinteria State Beach. Change things up with a short trip to Rincon Bike Trail in Carpinteria (about 30 minutes away). Dedicate the 16th (Sun) to wine at some of the top wineries in the area. There's much more to do: tour the pleasant surroundings at Santa Barbara Zoo, take in the awesome beauty at Cold Spring Tavern, admire the majestic nature at El Presidio de Santa Barbara State Historic Park, and look for all kinds of wild species at Douglas Family Preserve.

For other places to visit, photos, traveler tips, and other tourist information, use the Santa Barbara trip itinerary planner .

Memphis to Santa Barbara is an approximately 8.5-hour flight. You can also do a combination of flight and bus; or drive. The time zone difference when traveling from Memphis to Santa Barbara is minus 2 hours. Prepare for a bit cooler weather when traveling from Memphis in June: high temperatures in Santa Barbara hover around 72°F and lows are around 56°F. Finish your sightseeing early on the 20th (Thu) so you can drive to Pismo Beach.

Things to do in Santa Barbara

Parks Tours Nature

Side Trip

Carpinteria
Highlights from your plan
Santa Barbara Zoo ©
Santa Barbara Zoo
Old Mission Santa Barbara ©
Old Mission Santa Barbara
Stearns Wharf ©
Stearns Wharf

2
nights
Pismo Beach

Pismo Beach ©
Pismo Beach is a city in San Luis Obispo County, in the Central Coast area of California, United States. Kick off your visit on the 21st (Fri): explore the activities along Morro Bay National Estuary, then admire the majestic nature at Montana de Oro State Park, and then race across the water with a speed boat tour. Keep things going the next day: explore the striking landscape at Morro Rock, grab your bike and head to Bob Jones City to Sea Bike Trail, and then kick back and relax at Eldwaylen Ocean Park.

To see more things to do, ratings, and tourist information, go to the Pismo Beach day trip planning app .

Traveling by car from Santa Barbara to Pismo Beach takes 2 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus; or take a train. When traveling from Santa Barbara in June, plan for somewhat warmer days and about the same nights in Pismo Beach: temperatures range from 78°F by day to 53°F at night. Finish up your sightseeing early on the 22nd (Sat) so you can go by car to San Simeon.

Things to do in Pismo Beach

Parks Nature Outdoors

Side Trips

Morro Bay, Avila Beach, Montana de Oro State Park
Highlights from your plan
Morro Rock ©
Morro Rock
Montana de Oro State Park ©
Montana de Oro State Park
Speed Boats Tours

3
nights
San Simeon

San Simeon ©
When you arrive in tiny San Simeon, which lies halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles, you can see why William Randolph Hearst chose this coastal locale for his famous hilltop castle.
Kids will appreciate attractions like Elephant Seal Rookery and William Randolph Hearst Memorial Beach. There's lots more to do: steep yourself in history at Hearst Castle, kick back and relax at Moonstone Beach, enjoy some diversion at Shamel Park, and visit a coastal fixture at Piedras Blancas Light Station.

Discover how to plan a San Simeon trip in just a few steps with Inspirock's itinerary builder.

Drive from Pismo Beach to San Simeon in 1.5 hours. Alternatively, you can take a bus. Expect a bit warmer weather when traveling from Pismo Beach in June: highs in San Simeon hover around 93°F, while lows dip to 53°F. Wrap up your sightseeing on the 25th (Tue) early enough to drive to Monterey.

Things to do in San Simeon

Parks Outdoors Beaches

Side Trip

Cambria
Highlights from your plan
Friends of the Elephant Seal ©
Friends of the Elephant Seal
Fiscalini Ranch Preserve ©
Fiscalini Ranch Preserve
Moonstone Beach ©
Moonstone Beach

5
nights
Monterey

Monterey ©
Monterey is a city in the U.S. You'll visit kid-friendly attractions like Dolphin & Whale Watching and Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. Next up on the itinerary: explore the activities along Monterey Bay, take in the waterfront at Old Fisherman's Wharf, stroll through Monterey Peninsula Recreational Trail, and take a memorable drive along 17-Mile Drive.

To find more things to do, ratings, and more tourist information, you can read our Monterey online attractions planner .

Traveling by car from San Simeon to Monterey takes 3 hours. Alternatively, you can take a train; or do a combination of car and bus. Expect colder weather when traveling from San Simeon in June: highs in Monterey hover around 68°F, while lows dip to 53°F. On the 30th (Sun), you'll have the morning to explore before heading back home.

Things to do in Monterey

Outdoors Wildlife Tours

Side Trip

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk
Highlights from your plan
Monterey Bay Aquarium ©
Monterey Bay Aquarium
17-Mile Drive ©
17-Mile Drive
Dolphin & Whale Watching

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